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One of the earliest shooting games was Asteroids, which involved a ship in deep space blowing apart giant space rocks, avoiding hostile aliens, and trying very hard not to get squashed to a pulp. Darkside takes the concept, dresses it in breathtaking visuals and then — presumably with a wry grin — wraps the entire thing around massive asteroids.
The conceit is that you’re protecting mining colonies, blasting orbiting chunks of space rock that are apparently surplus to requirements, and dealing with the odd passing alien that just so happens to be armed and dangerous. Are they ever happy to see you?
Initially, it’s all plain sailing, but Darkside ramps up the difficulty level very quickly, much like its arcade-based ancestor. By level five, the going is more like pinball, with your ship getting smacked about all over the place if you’re not careful with your shots — or quick with your fingers.
You get the thrilling arcade mode entirely for free, which seems pretty generous to us. If you like it, a survival mode and a bunch of missions are available for $1.99/£1.49, a single IAP that also unlocks smart bombs in arcade mode – great for higher scores!
Price: FREE [IAP]
Size: 26.2 MB
Platform: iOS Universal
Developer: Clockwork Pixels Ltd
- Gorgeous to look at
- High-octane action
- Gets tough very fast
- Controls are a bit small